IrrigationPotable WaterRegional Water CycleStorm WaterWater ConservationWater Harvesting

Free Water (Video)

Watch "Free Water" — a 3-minute film on the potential of urban water harvesting featuring Brad Lancaster, author of Rainwater Harvesting for Drylands and Beyond. It just got accepted to another online competition, and if it gets enough views/votes it could screen at the SXSW 2013 Eco Fest, which would be a huge boost for exposure to such regenerative strategies. Share/encourage others to watch it too!

Brad Lancaster

Since 1993 I’ve run a successful permaculture consulting, design, and education business focused on integrated and sustainable approaches to landscape design, planning, and living. And as I live in a dryland environment, water harvesting has long been one of my specialties and a passion. I started writing the Rainwater Harvesting for Drylands and Beyond series with the goal of empowering my clients and my community to make positive change in their own lives and yards, by harvesting and enhancing free on-site resources such as water, sun, wind, shade, and more. I wanted to provide accessible books that explain what water harvesting is, how to do it appropriately, and how to tailor water-harvesting strategies to the unique conditions of different sites and integrate it with the harvest of other resources. I believe we all can become beneficial stewards of the land, and partners in the ecosystem in which we live, and I believe that by harvesting water—and more—we can all begin to transform our households and neighborhoods from being consumers of resources to generators—and even regenerators—of resources. Drawing on my years of teaching, consulting, designing, on-the-ground implementation, and learning from others, I offer readers my clear and simple process to assess and design their own harvesting systems at home and throughout their community.


  1. Awesome as always! You continue to inspire me with your videos, books, lectures and projects. I think perhaps people who don’t live in the desert don’t realize the enormity of what you’ve accomplished and what it means for urban drylands everywhere (and beyond!).

  2. Kind of shameful how obvious the solutions are and cheap too. Its kind of frustrating how expensive the solutions that have been implemented are.

    The more we share, the more people learn.

    Thanks for sharing.


  3. Always a pleasure to see your videos, you’ve inspired me to capture road run off at my rural property. I’ve often watched as rivers flow past my drive and thought, what a waste!

  4. I’m with Rohan and his criticism of the lack of pragmatism that exists in society. I read a funny story in Michael Mobbs’ “Sustainable Food”.

    Some community members wanted their council to dig up an ugly and useless concrete verge. The council wasn’t responsive. The members went down to the local equipment hire outlet and hired a jack hammer and completed the work themselves. They brought in soil and turned the verge into a veggie garden. The council caught wind of this and sent the mayor down for a photo opportunity. It plays to the old phrase: “It’s easier to ask forgiveness than it is to get permission”.

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